2019 Awards and Moving Forward
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These five categories celebrate those volunteers who embody the Trail Conference’s mission and the award categories reflect our organization’s values statements:
The Raymond H. Torrey Award for Lifetime Impact
The Trail Conference's most prestigious award honors volunteers who embody our mission and uphold our values. This award is given to those who have made significant and lasting contributions that have impacted the trails, natural lands, people and/or operations of the Trail Conference.
Raymond H. Torrey was a founding member of the Trail Conference. He was an outdoor writer, fierce advocate for open space and parks, and helped plan and create many of the popular trails in Harriman State Park and beyond.
JoAnn and Paul Dolan
William T. Golden
H. Peter Stern
The Elizabeth Levers Award for Engagement and Inclusivity
Honors volunteers who go above and beyond to bring people into the Trail Conference family. It celebrates those who have been strong advocates for ensuring our trails and natural areas are an inclusive environment offering everyone the opportunity to connect with nature. It is given to those who embody our value that the joys of nature belong to everyone.
Elizabeth Levers was the Trail Conference President from 1970 – 1972. She engaged numerous youth, including organizing 30 Eagle Scout projects. She was determined to bring as many people into the fold as possible because, as she stated, "You need an ongoing belief in this kind of thing to keep the trails alive."
Rose Bonanno - LTC Chair, East Hudson Westchester; Trail Supervisor, East Hudson Lewisboro; Trail Crew Member, Wests Crew
The Jakob Franke Award for Conservation
Honors volunteers who have advocated for and dedicated significant time and effort to land preservation and trail protection in the face of encroaching development. It is given to those who embody our value that conservation is a shared duty and that we must preserve the integrity of our natural world.
Jakob Franke was chair of the Conservation Committee and worked tirelessly to preserve and protect land for the future, including helping to protect the Palisades from the proposed outsized construction of LG headquarters. He was a plaintiff in the lawsuit, a speaker at meetings, and went door-to-door to educate the public.
Glenn Oleksak - LTC Chair, West Hudson; Trail Supervisor, NJ Highlands Trail; Maintainer, Pyramid Mountain and Southern Wyanokies
Win Perry - Maintainer, West Hudson Long Path
The William Hoeferlin Award for Exemplary Leadership
Honors volunteers who have contributed long-time exemplary service in a leadership capacity by supporting other volunteers and/or spearheading a major project. It is given to those who embody our value of celebrating volunteers and recognizing that they make the trails and protection of the lands we love possible.
William Hoeferlin dedicated himself to leading his hiking group of 40+ people to engage with the trails. He devoted countless hours to discovering, developing, clearing, and marking trails in the New York metropolitan area and in 1934 he even began making his own trail maps that quickly became the key source for most hikers and volunteers.
Alan Abramowitz - Trail Supervisor & Maintainer, NJ Waywayanda East
Nick McKenna - Trail Supervisor & Maintainer, NJ Waywayanda State Park West
Keith Scherer - Trail Supervisor & Maintainer, NJ Waywayanda State Park East; Policy Council
Christopher Connolly - RTC Chair, NJ; LTC Chair, North Jersey & Northeast Jersey; Policy Council
Jane Daniels - RTC Chair, East Hudson; Trail Supervisor, Yorktown; Trail Crew Leader, East Hudson; Volunteer Committee; Publications Committee
Richard Jobsky - RTC Chair, West Hudson; Trail Supervisor, Sterling Forest
The Joan Ehrenfeld Award for Responsible Stewardship
Honors volunteers who have dedicated significant time and effort to the conscientious stewardship of protected natural areas or environmentally-responsible trail construction and education. It is given to those who embody our value that the right path is always a responsible one.
Dr. Joan Ehrenfeld, a professor of Ecology at Rutgers, was an expert on invasive species, wetlands ecology, and urban ecology. She helped found the Trail Conference’s invasive species efforts and brought an environmental science focus to trail management.
Cliff Berchtold - Invasive Plant Surveyor; Trail Maintainer, Sterling Forest; Trail Crew Member
These seven categories celebrate a variety of volunteers from newbies to veterans and everything in between:
The Rising Leader Award
Honors volunteers who have taken on additional responsibilities with great enthusiasm over the last two years and demonstrate leadership qualities. It is given to those who selflessly keep dedicating more time and effort and show no signs of slowing down.
Lou Baldanza - Trail Supervisor, Neversink River Unique Area
David DeShazer - LTC Chair & Trail Supervisor, NJ Lenape Trail
Roger Dubin - Trail Supervisor & Maintainer, Bear Mountain
The Paul Leiken Award for Going the Extra Mile
Honors volunteers who have recently “gone the extra mile” and made a significant, noteworthy contribution in the last 12 to 18 months.
Lori Baumann - Front Desk Support
Janelle Heise - Front Desk Support; Maintainer, NJ Appalachian Trail; A.T. Natural Heritage Monitor
David Holtzmann - Front Desk Support; Trail Maintainer, Southern Shawangunks
Christine Jackson - Front Desk Support; Invasive Plant Surveyor
Sharon Wolf - Front Desk Support
Bryan Blackburn - Corridor Manager, Monitor, & Trail Maintainer, East Hudson Appalachian Trail
Ed DiSalvo - Trail Maintainer, NJ Highlands Trail & Northern Wyanokies
Brian Lanius - Trail Maintainer, Sterling Forest
Bob McCormick - Trail Maintainer, Black Rock Forest
Mario Medici - Trail Maintainer, Ringwood State Park & Sterling Forest
Chester Morris - Sawyer, NJ
The West Jersey Trail Crew - Pochuck Boardwalk Replacement Project, 2018 Storms Sawyer Response
The Hit the Ground Running Award
Honors volunteers who have “hit the ground running” and made a strong impact within their first two years of service.
Mike Bousquet - Corridor Manager, Trail Supervisor, & Maintainer, WH Appalachian Trail
Tara Spear - Corridor Manager, Trail Supervisor, & Maintainer, WH Appalachian Trail
Jenny Carel - Ecological Stewardship Program Volunteer
Laurie and Frank Galdun - Trail Supervisors & Maintainers, Pyramind Mountain
Stephen (Yaakov) Geis and CommSAR - Bear Mountain
Philip Heidelberger - Maintainer, Fahnestock; Policy Committee
Sam Lee - East Fahnestock Mountain Bike Trail Network Project
Jim LeMaire - Trail Supervisor & Maintainer, Southern Wyanokes; Policy Committee
Chuck Mattes - Trail Maintainer, Sterling Forest
Kaitlin Messmer - Trail Supervisor, Pequannock Watershed
Patrick Messmer - Trail Supervisor & Maintainer - Pequannock Watershed
David Miller - Trail Maintainer, Southern Shawangunks
Andre Nizzari - Trail Maintainer, Long Path and Devil's Path
Adrienne Popko - Lower Hudson PRISM Volunteer
Cindy Wagner - Trail Maintainer, Southern Shawangunks
Valerie Wargo - Trail Magic and Trail Volunteer
The Next Generation Award
Honors volunteers under 25 years of age who have enthusiastically and passionately made contributions serving the Trail Conference's mission.
Forrest Becker - Dedicated Volunteer for the 2018 Ramapo Crew
Lucas Petruzzo and Nikhil Singh - Mohansic Trailway Project Boardwalk
The Dedicated Service Award
Honors long-time, dedicated volunteers who have demonstrated exemplary service to the trails and natural areas that surround them.
Jill Arbuckle - NJ Appalachian Trail
Paul Kienker - Trail Maintainer, Long Path South
Richard Lynch - Crew Member, West Hudson
Tim Messerich and the RPH Cabin Volunteers - Maintainers, East Hudson Appalachian Trail
Jerry Ruocco - Corridor Monitor, West Hudson Appalachian Trail
Elaine Silverstein - Invasive Plant Surveyor; A.T. Natural Heritage Monitor
Bruce Thaler - Invasive Plant Surveyor; A.T. Natural Heritage Monitor; Trail Maintainer, Ramapo Mountain
The Ken Lloyd Award for Outstanding Member Club
Honors member clubs who have provided remarkable service to trails and natural lands in partnership with the Trail Conference.
We have not had any Ken Lloyd Award for Outstanding Member Club winners yet.
The Major William A. Welch Award for Outstanding Partner
Honors partners who have been strong advocates for and provided significant assistance to Trail Conference volunteers.
Major William A. Welch was instrumental in creating Harriman State Park and the Appalachian Trail. He served as the park’s first general manager and was a co-founder of the Trail Conference.
Terrence Nolan - Senior Vice President, Open Space Institute
2018 Awards and Prior
The Raymond H. Torrey Award
The Conference's most prestigious award, given for significant and lasting contributions that protect trails and the land upon which they rest.
JoAnn and Paul Dolan
William T. Golden
H. Peter Stern
The William Hoeferlin Award
Recognizes Trail Conference volunteers who have demonstrated exemplary service to trail maintenance, management, and/or trail land protection. It is usually given after more than seven years of service.
Gerard Hoekstra, Jr.
Ike & Marilyn Siskind
The Paul Leikin Extra Mile Award
Recognizes those volunteers who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to projects such as a book, map or advocacy.
Anne and Gerry Barry
Jeremy Apgar and Amber Ray
Gely & Jakob Franke
Chris Reyling and the Long Distance Trails Crew
The Ken Lloyd Award
Recognizes Trail Conference member clubs who have demonstrated exemplary service to trail maintenance, management, and/or trail land protection.
Mahwah Environmental Volunteers Organization (MEVO)
RPH Cabin Volunteers
Robert Fuller - AMC NY-North Jersey
Mark Traver - Long Path North Hiking Club
Wappinger Greenway Trail Committee
Clarence Putman - Long Path North Hiking Club
John Graham - AMC NY-North Jersey Chapter
Laurie Rankin - Catskill 3500 Club
Jill Arbuckle - AMC NY-North Jersey (presented 2010)
Suzanne Wilder - Musconetcong Mountain Conservancy
Chris Olney - Catskills Mountain Club
Patty Lee Parmalee - Save the Ridge
Pete Tilgner - Ramapo ADK
Suzan Gordon - Ramapo ADK
Ilse Dunham - Interstate Hiking Club
The Major William A. Welch Trail Partner Award
Presented to those outside the Trail Conference (for example, state, federal, or local agency partner officials) who have given long and/or significant assistance to the Trail Conference.
Department of Parks and Recreation, Yorktown NY
Essex County, NJ
Joshua Osowski - Northern Regional Office Superintendent with NJ DEP
Evan Thompson - Park Manager, Fahnestock & Hudson Highlands State Park
Todd Cochran - Bergen County Department of Parks Superintendent
Erik Humphrey - Park Manager and Park Staff, Minnewaska State Park Preserve
Willie Janeway - Director Region 3, NYS DEC
Rebecca Fitzgerald - Ringwood State Park Superintendent
Eric Pain - Ringwood State Park Superintendent
Mary-Pat Pfeil - NJ Park Ranger
David Epstein, Executive Director - Morris Land Conservancy
Jack Shuart - NJ DEP
Adena Long - SI Greenbelt
Congresswoman Sue Kelly, NY 19th District
Brian Goodman - OPRHP Taconic
Wes Powers - NJ DEP
Karen Lutz - Appalachian Trail Conservancy
Brother Hoengst - Hil-mar Lodge
Arlene Miller - Rockland Co. Planning
Lou Cherepy - NJ DEP Regional Superintendent
Interstate Hiking Club
Raymond Mesaris - Palisades Interstate Park Commission
William Rudge - NY DEC region 3
John Keator - NJ DEP High Point
Barry Sullivan - NPS DWGRNA
John Kennedy - OPRHP Taconic
John R. Sencabaugh - NY DEC Region 4
W. Garry Ives - NY DEC Albany
Franciscan Friars of Atonement
Long Path North Hiking Club
Jean-Ann McGrane - NY DEC Region 3
Bill Bauman - OPRHP Taconic
Robert L. Bendict - NY DEC Albany
Jonathan Rosenberg - NWCDC
Kenneth Krieser - Palisades Interstate Park Commission
Rick Dearstyne - NY DEC Region 4
Eric Holman - National Park Service
Kenneth Lutters - OPRHP Taconic
Patricia Rudge - NY DEC Region 3
Ivan Vamos - OPRHP Albany
Steven Golden - National Park Service
Bob Goodman - NJ DEP, Wawayanda
Jeane Ross - Palisades Interstate Park Commission, NJ
Charles Quadri - Palisades InterstatePark Commission, NJ
Karl Beard - National Park Service
Helen Fenske - NJ DEP, Trenton
Nelson Sears - NY DEC Region 3
Fred Gerty - NY DEC Region 3
John Garcia - NJ DEP, Trenton
Jack Karnig - Black Rock Forest
Tim Sullivan - Palisades Interstate Park Commission
William Foley - NJ DEP, Stokes State Forest
The Leo Rothschild Conservation Award
Presented to a person or organization that has made a significant contribution to the protection of our trails and/or the natural lands that surround them.
Friends of the Shawangunks
Basha Kill Area Association
Open Space Institute
Ella Filippone - Passaic River Coalition
Neil Woodworth - ADK
The Don Derr Award
Recognizes the outstanding contributions and exemplary service by off-trail volunteers. Usually given after five or more years of service or at the conclusion of a major project.
The Honorary Life Membership Award
Conveys life member status and the right to vote at Voting Member meetings. Usually given after long (greater than 20) years of extraordinary service to the Trail Conference.
John Blenninger (deceased)
Pete and Jo-Ann Senterman
Bob Marshall (deceased)
Richard N. Warner (deceased)
Albert Field (deceased)
Paul Leikin (deceased)
Kenneth W. Lloyd (deceased)
Lore Oppenheimer (deceased)
Donald B. Derr (deceased)
George M. Zoebelein (deceased)
Meyer Kukle (deceased)
Nat Lester - 19?? (deceased)
Elizabeth Levers (deceased)
The Next Generation Award
Given to those under age 21 who make significant contributions of time and energy to trail building or protection.
Boy Scout Troop #258, Mahwah
Hike'N Serve Venturing Crew #100
BSA Ringwood Boy Scout Troop 96
Saint Benedict's Backpacking Project
Hutterian Brethren Schools
Edward Leo Walsh
The Distinguished Service Award
Recognizes exceptional service, usually three or more years. Nominations can only be submitted by Committee Chairs.
Pasquale “Pat” Marcotullio - Buildings and Grounds Committee
Steve Reiss - West Jersey Trail Crew Member
Bill and Linda Taggart - Maintainers, Swartswood State Park
Irene Auleta - Stakeholder Action Team
Susan Barbuto - Stakeholder Action Team
Hanna Benesch - Membership and Development
Wendell George - Catskills Roving Trail Maintenance Crew Leader
David Haas - Mahwah Regional Chamber of Commerce
Lee Mott - West Jersey Trail Crew Member
James Mott - West Jersey Trail Crew Member
Howard and Susan Reed - Trail Maintainers, Stokes State Forest
Will Soter - Local Trails Chair, Catskills
Martin Stratton - Trail Supervisor, Catskills
Jill Weber - Rockaway Park Administrator
Howard "Pete" France - Northern Catskills Trails Chair
Rich Weiler - Trail maintainer, Harriman State Park
Bob Paine - Trail maintainer, Harriman State Park
Marci Layton - Trail volunteer, Harriman State Park
Mark Nordyke - Invasives Strike Force
Peter Schwartz - Web Committee
George Form - Long Path Trail Committee
Kenneth Malkin - Web Committee Mar. 22
Craig Nunn - Pubs Committee Dec. 6
Phil McLewin - Web Committee, Oct. 15
Sandy Parr - North Jersey Trail Crew Chief, presented at Trails Council, Oct. 6
Jim Robbins - Presented Jan. 24
Richard Zinn - Presented Feb. 20
Artie Hidalgo - Jolly Rovers, presented at Trails Council, Dec. 2
Bob Brunner - Jolly Rovers, presented at Trails Council, Dec. 2
William Stoltzfus - North Jersey Trails Committee, Oct. 7
The Corporate Partner Award
Given to businesses or their employees for outstanding service to the hiking community.
Andy S. Norin, esq / Drinker, Biddle, Reath LLP
Central Hudson Gas & Electric
Bob Enderlee, Arrow Graphics
Jersey Central Power & Light